Last modified: 2012-08-07 03:56:10 UTC
I changed some text strings in Language.php to fix the wording of the footers,
but I have been unable to find an admin page that lets me update the database
from the original language.php. After skimming through the minimal
documentation in the DOCS dir, I found that there was an update.php in the
maintenance directory that promised to fix my issue. This is its output:
maintenance$ php update.php
Sorry! The wiki is experiencing some technical difficulties, and cannot contact
the database server. <br />
Access denied for user: 'dylang@localhost' (Using password: NO)
This is completely not what I was expecting, since I have a valid Wiki setup, it
has a db password and name setup, and works fine on the web side. Why does this
maintence script not read the settings that the rest of the system reads?
Either this script should be documented with correct useage (not tagged with
@todo document internally), or it should just work.
Please check the settings in your AdminSettings.php.
you shouldn't ever edit the language files. edit [[MediaWiki:<name of
message>]] to change message text.
Kate, there was no README file in the language dir, nor any docs in the docs dir
that mention this. I don't consider that an acceptable state of affairs. If
this bug encourages the developers to address this, then great.
I have no idea what the message name is since there is pretty much no admin
interface in the MediaWiki software. If it were Scoop, I could browse a list of
blocks and messages with descriptions and fairly readable names. No such
interface exists on my test mediaWiki, despite being the equivalent of a
superuser on the Wiki. I tried looking at it from the SQL side as well, but
there are too many blocks for me to effectively search it.
Go to Special:Allmessages on your wiki.
Also, read the FAQ please. This is prominently noted in every release announcement, and a Google search for "mediawiki faq" would
turn it up immediately.
Brion, thanks for pointing that specific page out. I question why I should have
to read a FAQ when this is a pretty basic part of the Wiki admin process. I
don't want to sound ignorant, but I think the software should be a little more
I would really like a more developed administration interface. When I do load
up the Allmessages special page, it highlights my changes in pink. It tells me
what files were modified, but there are no widgets or other obvious methods by
which I can cause the database to be updated with the new values. There are no
easy-editing buttons here.
Have you tried clicking on the links on that page?
For more information please read these documents before continuing:
Perhaps I'm mistating myself. The interface, as shipped, for the day-to-day
administration of the Wiki does not expose or otherwise have an obvious method
of editing the special pages. I think there can be a better solution. I'll
come back when I have one for you, since you don't want to discuss it.
(In reply to comment #8)
> Perhaps I'm mistating myself. The interface, as shipped, for the day-to-day
> administration of the Wiki does not expose or otherwise have an obvious method
> of editing the special pages.
If by "special pages" you are referring to the interface messages in the
MediaWiki namespace , they are editable by *exactly the same method as any
other page*; that seems like a pretty obvious one to me.
As for discovering that they exist in the first place, the default main page you
are presented with when viewing a new install links to a page with copious
explanations and instructions , and the MediaWiki FAQ  covers this under
"How do I change messages of the user interface?"
Having been told of Special:Allmessages, you were still confused because you had
not yet encountered a description of "the MediaWiki: namespace". Thus the only,
fairly subtle, improvement I can think of making would be to link this phrase to
, in lieu of a system for importing and updating help content locally in new
To be honest, managing to find the bug tracker but not the FAQ seems rather
surprising, but never mind... To get out of the state you find yourself in:
* Your statement "I have no idea what the message name" seems to contradict your
claim to have editted the language file; the message names in the database and
that file have a 1-to-1 correspondence.
* So, rather than changing the messages in the PHP file, simply go to
.../yourwiki/MediaWiki:messagename for each one and edit the text through the
* [The reason Special:Allmessages is not offering to make your changes live is
because it views the PHP file as the "default version" and the database one as
customisation overriding it, not vice versa]
(In reply to comment #9)
"they are editable by *exactly the same method as any
other page*; that seems like a pretty obvious one to me. "
Unless you've actually done some HCI testing, don't think anything is obvious.
I'm sure it'd be obvious in Mediawiki shipped with some docs, but the docs dir
just says, "install this other application" ... not really what I'd consider
acceptable on any project. I did figure the interface out after playing with it
a bit, but I would expect there to be some tutorial text in the intro of the
(rather large) page. I'd also expect it to be broken up into sections much more
so than now. The page, as is, is about 2,000 lines long -- a ridiculous number!
"To be honest, managing to find the bug tracker but not the FAQ seems rather
You know, I don't find it surprising. I did everything I could to RTFM.
Wikimedia, itself, does not ship with a FM. Instead in ships with some hyper
links to a wiki. I consider this a bug. I filed a bug as such (update.php
doesn't work as advertised, as you could imply from its complete lack of docs).
The developer marked it as invalid.
I did figure out the items you mention at the end, in using the interface. My
set of goals I want to do with MediaWiki involve adding text descriptions to
those pages describing how to do the common operations. Another addition I'm
wanting to put in are some real docs in the docs dir, not the"download this
auto-doc generator" which is exactly useful to developers, not users/administrators.
I guess my summary is: MediaWiki ships with no documentation. A link to a wiki
still isn't documentation, nor should it be construed as such. I had about 9
tabs open, and I still couldn't easily find the answers I wanted, because the
quality of the wiki is very uneven. I suppose you could call that a meta-bug.
To be honest, I don't find your condescending attitude surprising. I wish you
wouldn't assume I'm some green newbie. Unless you know who I am and what my
achievements are (which do include working on the Linux kernel, a place which
tends to be better documented in the OpenSource world), you have nothing from
which to base your actions on, except to establish a conversation and find out
what the issuess are (if they are not immediately obvious). I'll freely admit
I'm not the best at communicating sometimes, but I do try to not be a dick. I
just want to be able to sit down with MediaWiki, install it, have TFM handy, and
be able to get into the more advanced setup where I can integrate it with the
other web applications I've got on my website.